Pre-ordered iPhone 4s could arrive tomorrow

If you were on of the 600,000 Apple fans who pre-ordered an Iphone4 on the first day of release, you'd better not go anywhere tomorrow.

Apple has sent out email announcements to a large number of early adopters telling them that their precious will be arriving a day early, which will be cold comfort to anyone who has booked the day off on Thursday in order to wait, drooling in anticipation, for the Fed Ex man to ring their bell.

The email, which has been reported by dozens of overexcited Engadget readers, says:

Dear Apple Store Customer,

You recently received a Shipment Notification email from Apple advising you that your iPhone has shipped.

This email is to confirm that your delivery will occur on June 23rd. Although Apple and FedEx tracking information may currently indicate a later date, you can check the FedEx website the morning of the June 23rd to track your package to your doorstep.

In the event that you will not be available to accept delivery on June 23rd, it may be more convenient to use our pre-sign delivery option by visiting our Order Status website at http://www.apple.com/orderstatus

Sincerely,

The Apple Store Team

It's not unusual for a few random Macolytes to get their gadgets a day or so in advance of the official release date due to the vagaries of national delivery systems, but for large numbers of punters to be informed of early deliveries by Apple is unprecedented as far as we can remember.

The iPhone 4, Apple's worst kept secret ever, officially goes on sale on Thursday June 24th. Most Apple stores will be opening their doors an hour early at 8am so that normal people don't have to watch the unpleasant spectacle of grown men crying over their new smartphones.